Lime Kitchen and Bathroom, the Hertfordshire based speciality online supplier of medical and healthcare compliant taps and sanitary ware is committed to making life easier for the less abled with a range of taps and showers that are DDA approved.
A number of points within the Disability Discrimination Act are particularly relevant to taps and showers. The use of standard non DDA approved products can be very impractical and sometimes dangerous for people who suffer with disabilities including those whose lack of tactile sensitivity can cause them to be injured. The use of DDA approved products can limit the risk of injuries and makes living with a disability that little bit easier.
The dedicated healthcare division at Lime Kitchen and Bathroom have listed the common issues associated with non DDA approved taps and showers and have made recommendations on how to overcome these with the use of speciality plumbing equipment.
The risk of scalding is very common in most households but is substantially higher in people who use care facilities such as care homes, hostels and sheltered accommodation, where there are vulnerable people who may be at risk. This risk should be taken very seriously as a majority of these incidents have proved to be fatal and have mainly occurred during bathing and shower. The most effective measure to prevent scalding is by adding a Thermostatic Mixing Valve to the existing pipework which will limit the outlet temperature of the water. This is achieved by mixing the hot and cold water in the valve which will then be at a lower and safer temperature for bathing. Lime Kitchen and Bathroom stock a wide range of TMV valves to suite both commercial and domestic applications. For convenience the Tectite TMV2/3 blending valve is easy to fit and simply pushes on to the existing pipe work. This is ideal for care home settings due to its automatic shut off safety feature if the cold supply fails. Alternatively a thermostatic tap or shower also achieves the same as a TMV valve and also incorporates ‘safetouch’ anti scald technology. The Alpi Ability Line range of taps from Lime Kitchen and Bathroom are suitable for both commercial and domestic use and the levers are made from soft edged flexible thermoplastic long levers for easy operation. The material of the lever is intended to reduce the risk of bruising or injury if accidently knocked. The Ability range is designed to be both aesthetically pleasing and practical with its combination of Italian design and quality engineering.
Standard tap handles can be extremely difficult to use for people with limited strength or manual dexterity. Taps should be able to be operated using a closed fist or controlled automatically in a setting where users are less abled. Long 6” lever taps are an ideal replacement for standard tap handles as they are designed to ensure easy operation and can be controlled with a hand, elbow or arm making it suitable users with limited dexterity. For bathing the Hart TMV3 Assist Bath Filler Tap available from lime is recommended as it is fitted with a long lever as well as TMV3 safeguard to prevent accidental burns or scalding. For general handwashing a long lever sequential tap is recommended as these control both the flow and temperature in a continuous movement. The Medical Lever Contemporary Sequential Mixer is also fitted with a long lever to allow elbow operation and also reduces the risk of scalding.
Infra-red sensor taps are touchless and can be controlled automatically without having to use any strength at all. Sensor taps are known to improve hygiene levels and the risk of cross contamination is significantly reduced. The Hart Commercial Touchless Sensor tap is particularly ideal for nursing homes and users who suffer from dementia or Alzheimer’s as the timed flow feature reduces the risk of the tap being left on and causing a flood.
Safety is a huge concern for people living with dementia or Alzheimer’s and the risk of causing a flood is increased. There are many shower valves and non-concussive taps which automatically shut off after a period of time and will reduce any chance of flooding. The Performa Multi-Directional Joystick Non Concussive Tap is both easy to operate by pushing or pulling the lever in any direction and has a flow time of 10 secs making the ideal for someone with little strength and also children due to its easy use.
For all enquiries please do not hesitate to call the highly knowledgeable sales team on 01923 268849 during normal office hours Mon-Fri 9-5 where they will be happy to go through individual requirements or answer any questions you may have regarding DDA approved products. If you’d like any further information on the above visit the Lime Kitchen and Bathroom website to see their extensive DDA approved product range.
Health and Safety Executive, Scalding and burning (2016)
World Health Organisation, Burns (2014)
Solicitors Journal, Burns from scalding: Accidents waiting to happen, Richard Hurst (2015)
HM Government, The Building Regulations, Access to and use of buildings (2010)